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“Superb and some very creative upscale Italian creations.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ciao Bistro

Ciao Bistro
302 Centre Street, Fernandina Beach, Amelia Island, FL 32034-0806
904-206-4311
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Cuisines: Italian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Outdoor seating, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Takeout, Late Night, Dessert
Charlotte, North Carolina
Top Contributor
70 reviews 70 reviews
54 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
“Superb and some very creative upscale Italian creations.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 26, 2012

The REAL test for a good (Italian) restaurant is the CROWD willing to wait to be seated because the restaurant is so popular that there are no empty tables to "just walk in and be seated" at 7PM on a Sunday night! Welcome to Ciao Bistro! I'm not sure WHY Pompeo's failed to prosper in this prime location, but Ciao Bistro has relocated to this site and has kept it Italian... fine Italian! In our party of four, two had chicken parmesan, one had the eggplant parmesan... deemed very tasty. I decided to have the "chicken ciao" which was an excellent red wine reduction with sausage, onion, mushrooms & succulent tender chicken breast! The side I chose was a delightful eggplant saute that was a daily special. Good choices... I'll be going back next visit to Amelia Island for the "chicken ciao" no doubt!
According to our carriage guide, Luigi's had closed & when Pompeo's folded, that left the downtown historic area without an Italian fare offering... except that Ciao Bistro relocated downtown after a few years in a different Fernandina Beach location. It might also be noted that Ciao Bistro is owned by a chef who decided to open HIS OWN PLACE after being chef at the Ritz-Carleton resort in Fernandina Beach! No surprise that a former Ritz-Carleton chef runs a fine dining restaurant!

  • Visited December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Denver, Colorado
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
66 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Our second visit one year later”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2012

We like to visit Fernandina Beach for vacation about once a year. Last year we really enjoyed our meal at the old Ciao Bistro when it was out in a strip mall and we were really looking forward to another great meal. We were not disappointed. It was better than last year. We really enjoyed the new location downtown close to everything. We were told that they had just moved in the last 3 weeks and you would have never know it. Everything was running smoothly in the clean and cozy dining area. The service was great and the food delicious. We are already looking forward to our next trip and another great meal.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Romantic dinner for two.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2012 via mobile

Excellent service. We sat at a table in the bar area, which actually proved to be quieter and more intimate than the crowded formal dining area. Food was delicious and moderately priced for a special night out. Server gave us the right amount of attention. Only restaurant in area that was packed on a Sunday night.

    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, Georgia, United States
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
“Lovely new location”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2012

First visit to the new location. Clean, cozy and very nice. Went without reservations on a Thursday evening and were seated promptly. Busy but not packed. Waiter was friendly and knowledgeable about the menu. The wine list was very limited and our choice was ok. The meal made up for anything missing with the wine. The three of us each had something different and all were very pleased. Tiramisu was fabulous! Will definitely be visiting again!

  • Visited November 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Savannah
Top Contributor
88 reviews 88 reviews
68 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
“Dine like family”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2012

Our party of nine arrived on time, reservation confirmed, and we waited 15 minutes.
It was like visiting a relative who just wasn't that punctual I guess. We truly didn't mind as Ciao is a bustling yet cozy place where everyone is friendly, like your favorite Aunt's kitchen.

The owner came out to greet us, speaking Italian to the eldest member of our party who was our local, Italian connection. He had to speak up a bit since the place is a bit noisy with conversations commingling around us. We were seated soon enough and bottles of wine, reasonably priced were on the table with some bread.

The menu featured the expected salads, pasta dishes and appetizers. We had calamari for the table. It was good, not great. Many of us chose the special, a red snapper with shrimp in tomato sauce. Again, good, not superb. What makes this restaurant so popular is the service, the individual attention, the easy pace, the family-like atmosphere.

One of our party was celebrating a birthday and the owner poured little glasses of moscato di asti for the table and served the birthday girl a wedge of cheesecake with candle. We all sang happy birthday to her delight.

All in all a delightful meal with good food, good company and a bill which won't break the bank (about 50 dollars a person with wine and tip). I can recommend it.

  • Visited December 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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